Mar 23 2013
There are many ways to increase the amount of local food in our daily lives…and many benefits in doing so.
It’s Good For You & Your Family
When you provide your family with juicy peaches, hormone-free chicken and crisp baby carrots, eating healthy becomes very easy, not to mention incredibly enjoyable.
It’s Good For BC Farmers & Communities
By supporting local farmers you are voting with your dollar to keep BC farmers farming, and safeguarding BC’s agricultural land for future generations.
It’s Better For Our Environment
The fresh produce sold at BC farmers’ markets usually travels less that 300km to get to you. Compare this to the average North American meal, which travels 2,400km to get from field to plate and contains ingredients from 5 countries in addition to our own. All that transportation results in a lot of fossil fuels being burned, which contributes, to air pollution, acid rain and climate change.
Here are 3 great ways to eat local
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA)
Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) fosters a closer link between local families and their food. CSA members make a commitment to the farm at the beginning of the season by paying in advance for a portion of the farm’s products throughout the season. This guarantees the farm a market for its products, provides members fresh food at a discount, and fosters responsible relationships between farmer, eater, and the land where the food is grown.With most CSA’s the produce is chosen for you, but some offer a “debit-style” program which allows you to choose the amount you’d like to prepay and what produce you prefer to have.
See a list of local CSA programs here.
A farmers’ market is a place where you come to learn about healthy food. It’s a meeting place to connect with friends, family and neighbours. It’s a springboard for local farmers to introduce their wares to new audiences, and it is a celebration of community and the bounty of our land. People come to farmers’ markets week after week for many reasons, including the community gathering experience, the opportunity to talk directly to farmers, and the reassurance that they are eating nutritious and ethically sourced food.
Find out dates and times of farmers markets in your area.
BC Seasonal Availability Guide
If you are looking to modify your diet or your menu to include more local and sustainable food products, understanding which farm products are available locally and when they are available is critical. You can download and print a copy of the BC Seasonal Availability Guide here . Keep a copy at home in your kitchen and keep a copy with you to bring to the grocery store.
Download and print the BC Seasonal Availability Guide here.
Mar 23 2013
Detoxification is a natural process that removes impurities from your body and leaves you feeling healthy and energized. After completing the detox process, many people report feeling lighter in body, mind, and spirit. They also report clearer skin, weight loss, and a lessening or disappearance of symptoms such as sinusitis, digestive disorders, mood swings, fatigue, and high blood pressure.
While there are a plethora of commercial cleansing and detoxification products on the market, it is easy to create your own safe and effective spring detoxification plan by following the 3 R’s of Detox and Including some or all of the 10 Detox Foods into your diet.
The 3 Rs of Detox
Food intolerances can arise when we consume the same foods day after day with little variety. Heartburn, headaches, looking tired even after sufficient sleep, an inability to lose weight, bloating, and water retention can all be related to the inflammation caused by an underlying food sensitivity or intolerance.
An estimated 60 percent of people suffer from food sensitivities, and though food intolerances may occur with any food, the most common are dairy products, soy, eggs, citrus fruits, nuts, wheat, and gluten. Remove these foods from the diet and slowly reintroduce them after a detox, so you can connect symptoms with food choices.
Sufficient stomach acid, enzymes, and bile secretion are essential to prevent bloating and to aid digestion and absorption of food. If you typically wake with a flat stomach but feel bloated and uncomfortable by the end of the day, try taking digestive enzymes with your meals to help reduce these uncomfortable symptoms.
Most digestive symptoms, including diarrhea, constipation, irritable bowel, and even food poisoning, can be improved by taking probiotics. Increasing micro-organisms in the gut increase immune system function and decrease inflammation.
Life stress contributes to the ongoing cycle of inflammation and food sensitivities Be kind to yourself during your detox: have a massage, practise deep belly breathing, and consider adding supplements of 5-hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP) if stress or anxiety are elevated.
10 Detox Foods
By including these foods in the diet often, we can help counteract the toxic effects of environmental pollution.
1.Dandelion Greens are an excellent liver tonic. They are high in vitamin B complex, vitamin C, and several minerals. Chlorophyll, a major constituent of dandelion greens and all green leafy foods, is a powerful blood purifier.
2.Ginger increases circulation, thereby promoting the excretion of toxins via the skin, bowels, and kidneys. It possesses antibacterial properties and helps to combat inflammation.
3.Apples purify the bloodstream and increase lymphatic action. Pectin, a soft, gelling fibre contained in apples, supports the colon’s excretion of toxic waste. The apple’s high vitamin C content further aids detoxification.
4.Lemons aid digestion by increasing saliva flow and stimulating liver function. They dissolve and toxins in the body and promote their excretion. They purify and alkalize the blood and have laxative and diuretic properties.
5.Grapes stimulate the liver and promote bowel and kidney function. They have a cleansing effect on all tissues and glands and speed up metabolic function. Purple grapes are high in resveratrol, a powerful disease-fighting antioxidant.
6.Artichokes stimulate the liver-the body’s major organ of detoxification.
7.Beets purify the blood, cleanse the liver, and stimulate lymphatic activity.
8.Parsley has a powerful cleansing effect on the blood-stream. It stimulates the bowels and supports the lungs, liver, kidneys, and spleen. Parsley is an excellent source of vitamins A and C and detoxifying chlorophyll.
9.Grapefruit has a cooling and purifying effect on the body. It cleanses the liver and gallbladder.
10.Yogourt promotes detoxification of the intestinal tract , thus ensuring proper assimilation of foods and nutrient synthesis.